By Faith Brar
My parent’s idea of a present on my 13th birthday was to suggest that I apply to 1 of 3 boarding schools they thought would prepare me for college better than any school in our hometown. As you can imagine, it took me a while to get used to the idea, but eventually I succumbed to it and decided to attend Cheltenham Ladies College in the U.K.
Traditional British boarding schools take discipline seriously. Looking back, I remember the most difficult things to get used to included handing my phone in before going to class, planning my homework knowing that the I wouldn’t have access to the internet after 9:30 p.m., and having to add our matrons on Facebook so that they could monitor our social media activities and make sure we were being appropriate.
It made me angry then and it makes me angry now.
Today, the realm of social media is much vaster and it is interesting to see how schools in the U.S. are tackling this “issue”. The Glendale School District in California thinks that spending $40K on a surveillance program, called Geo Listening, to monitor social media activity is the right way to go. The ethical issue raised by this decision is due to the fact that surveillance continues 24/7 as opposed to only taking pace during school hours. According to the district their $40,000 is being well-spent, but I can’t help but wonder how that money could be used for other things, like potentially bettering the schools as a whole and how much cheaper it would be to just leave the monitoring to the parents.
What are your thoughts? Do you think 24/7 monitoring is a little to invasive?